Tamborine Mountain is part of the northern rim of the great caldera of which Mt Warning is the dominant feature. Formed millions of years ago, the eons of weathering has produced a plateau with rich volcanic soils and underground aquifers of indeterminate magnitude. The mountain has a unique climate and peculiar ecosystems, which support much diversity of fauna and flora.
Tamborine Mountain has been described as an island in the sky, and is referred to as the “Green behind the Gold” in the tourism industry. Situated in the Gold Coast hinterland and within an hour’s drive of Brisbane it is one of the most visited day-trip destination in Australia, attracting some 1.3 million visitors, both national and international, per annum. There is also a thriving B & B industry for longer-term stayers.
Although one community, the mountain is in reality three distinct “village” areas, separated from each other by green belts and rural land. Eagle Heights is situated adjacent to the north-eastern escarpment; North Tamborine includes the main business centre and occupies the north-western edge of the plateau; Mt Tamborine encompasses the whole southern part of the mountain. Farming, dairying, and timber getting were once the dominant industries, but wine, avocados, cheese, flowers and native plants, kiwi fruit, and award winning liquors, are just some of the disparate produce of the plateau these days. Tamborine Mountain contains a number of National Parks including Witches Falls which is the oldest in Queensland (established in 1908) and the second oldest in Australia. Rare and endangered species, both animal and vegetable, inhabit the mountain and its immediate environs, and it behoves all residents to be mindful of this fact in their day-to-day activities.
The people of Tamborine Mountain supply all their own water either from rain tanks or bores, and each allotment has its own effluent disposal system. During the day a great variety of beautiful birds forage on the mostly native plant life, and glow-worms, luminous fungi and other nocturnal creatures benefit from the minimal street lighting.
There are two primary schools, and two secondary schools on Tamborine Mountain. Many sporting clubs exist, and cultural activities such as Opera on the Mountain and Little Theatre enjoy much support. Service clubs and community care organizations, and volunteer emergency response groups are also well represented. Landcare and the Chamber of Commerce are two very active associations as are Tamborine Mountain Natural History Association and the local Historical Society. Arts and Crafts cater to visitors and locals alike.
(article adapted from original article by Roland Lindenmayer)